Miami and Wisconsin will meet for just the fourth time in history, and the first since 1989, when they battle in the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando. Miami won the last meeting 51-3 at Madison in Dennis Erickson's debut as head coach. Wisconsin's only win over Miami occurred in the 1958 season opener.
The Hurricanes are 19-15 in 34 previous bowls and are 8-3 in their last 11 bowl appearances. They are 0-1 under current head coach Randy Shannon after losing to 24-17 to California in last year's Emerald Bowl.
This is Miami's third appearance in the Champs Sports Bowl, but its first since the game moved from Miami to Orlando
in 2001 and its first since Champs Sports became the title sponsor in 2004. It is Miami’s 16th bowl game in the state of Florida, but the first since it edged Florida State in the Orange Bowl at the end of the 2003 season.
Shannon is 21-16 overall at Miami.
Wisconsin is making its second consecutive appearance in the Champs Sports Bowl after suffering a 42-13 loss to Florida State last year. The Badgers have played six straight bowl games in the state of Florida with two visits to Tampa (Outback) and four to Orlando (Champs Sports and Capital One).
Wisconsin is 10-10 all-time in bowl games, but has dropped two straight and is 2-4 in its last postseason contests. Head coach Bret Bielema is 1-1 in bowl games, 37-14 overall with the Badgers.
Miami closed the 2009 season by winning 4 of its last 5 games and brings a 9-3 record into this contest, its best mark since 2005.
Offensively, Miami QB Jacory Harris ranks second among ACC quarterbacks in yards passing (3,164) and leads the ACC in touchdown passes with 17. WR Leonard Hankerson has 44 receptions for 773 yards and six TD's, while RB Graig Cooper has rushed for a team-high 666 yards.
On special teams, PK Matt Bosher has made good on 14-of-16 field goals and all 48 of his extra-point attempts
The 'Cane defense is led by DL Allen Bailey who has registered seven QB sacks, while LB Darryl Sharpton needs nine tackles to reach the 100 mark for the season.
Wisconsin sophomore running back John Clay was named consensus Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, while true freshman linebacker Chris Borland earned consensus conference Freshman of the Year honors. Clay is just the third Badger in school history to earn Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors, leading the league in rushing with 1,396 yards and 16 TD's.
QB Scott Tolzien has thrown for 2,445 yards and 16 touchdowns. TE Garrett Graham has seven TD pass receptions.
Borland has forced five fumbles, recorded four quarterback sacks and blocked a kick.
The game will be televised on ESPN beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET on December 29. It will serve as the nightcap of a double-header on ESPN that begins with the EagleBank Bowl at 4:30 p.m. ET.